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    Why I Love Mondays

    April 9th, 2014

    Will Lynch is Head of Advertising at Ticketmaster Ireland (a Live Nation Entertainment company) where he has worked since June 2011

    Company: Live Nation Entertainment, which was formed from the merger of Ticketmaster and Live Nation, is Headquartered in Beverly Hills, California and is the world’s leading live entertainment and eCommerce company. Live Nation Entertainment consists of five businesses: concert promotion and venue operations, sponsorship, ticketing solutions, e-commerce and artist management.
    Ticketmaster is the global event ticketing leader and one of the world’s top five eCommerce web sites. We enable passionate fans to easily seek out and discover memorable live experiences.

    Job description: I help agencies to generate demand for their brands by reaching our fans. I always try to make sure our agencies look good in front of their clients. I do this by providing premium bespoke media solutions, real value and solid results.
    I stepped outside of my digital comfort zone by creating a partnership with Drinkaware.ie where I put Drinkaware ads on the back of all Ticketmaster tickets, which was a media first and it put the message of enjoying alcohol responsibly directly into the hands of our fans at concerts and festivals.
    I act as an ambassador for Live Nation Entertainment and Ticketmaster in the industry here and by speaking at digital media events. I also see my role as being a digital evangelist. Admittedly this is a hangover from my Generator days.

    Likes: The people. The people who work in the Irish advertising industry and the people who work in my company. The people in the agencies, brands and other publishers are among the smartest, coolest and most fun people you could ever hope to work with. Also working for a massive live entertainment company is pretty cool as I love music, comedy and festivals. Somedays I have to pinch myself to ensure that I am not dreaming.

    Career ladder: One of the best days of my life was when I met the visionary Mark Tarbatt in 2005 when I was in my early 20s.
    After I left college, I worked in a soporific junior clerical role in Bank of Ireland before flirting with recruitment. I was always passionate about digital. I was still a little reticent to join Generator as it seemed a risky career proposition to join a small start-up but I wanted to follow my dream of working with fun people and with cool websites.
    Staying in my comfortable but ultimately unfulfilling recruitment job would have been the easy option until Mark jolted me into action by asking me if I wanted to spend the rest of my life reading CVs all day or did I want to join him on an exciting journey where we were going to revolutionise the advertising industry. I handed in my notice that day and I joined Generator’s nascent sales team.
    Generator was Ireland’s first internet advertising sales house and at the time digital was not even a burgeoning industry. It didn’t really exist. It was thanks to the prescience of such people like Mark, Simon Ferguson, Justin Cullen and Shenda Loughnane who were beating the digital drum machine, long before it was de rigueur to do so, that the digital advertising industry is succeeding and thriving to the levels it is today. Generator handled the online ad sales for a select number of premium publishers: RTE.ie, Eircom.net, Microsoft, Bebo, BBC.com, DAFT.ie, RTE.ie, Irish Independent.ie, Communicorp, Vodafone Live and Muzu.tv. Generator was a fantastic opportunity that I was given. Working there was a very happy time in my life as it was a real privilege and a genuine pleasure to work with such prestigious websites.
    Mark was a great mentor to have and a very inspiring leader. We had a very talented, capable and smart team in Generator and I am still friends with everyone there. Sadly when a number of our publishers transitioned everything in-house, we had to shut the Generator doors. That was a sad day. I went travelling for six months, came back rejuvenated and was approached to head up a new advertising department in Ticketmaster as we were transitioning our business in house too. Obviously this was difficult for me to do as I had great empathy and respect for the talented team in the sales house that represented us at the time.
    I have been able to apply all that I learned in Generator over the years to Ticketmaster to great effect.
    If I had any advice it would be this – be passionate, be interesting and follow your dreams. Dream big. Also be nice to all people at all times.

    Qualifications: I was studying Sociology and Social Policy in Trinity but for a variety of reasons I never finished my degree. I was once asked when will I finish my education and I replied –you never finish your education as learning is a continuous, lifelong process. People need to keep that spark of intellectual curiosity alive. I am a voracious reader and a proud autodidact.

    Working hours: It is 2014. Set working hours are anachronistic. Nothing more than a relic from when the world transitioned from a feudal society to an industrial one and extrinsic motivation was required to crank out more widgets on an assembly line. A book on this area that I would enthusiastically recommend is Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink. The latest research is both compelling and persuasive. It shows that companies that adopt a ROWE policy enjoy higher productivity, increased morale, increased employee retention and increased revenue. “The future is already here – it’s just not very evenly distributed.”
    That being said our office hours are 9.30 to 6pm. However, the digital media world never sleeps as it is a very social industry and the digital fingers of the super-caffeinated rarely stop clicking.

    Breaktime: Depends. Some days I go to the gym. Other days I don’t take a break at all and others I will have a leisurely lunch with a client. If the sun is shining, I will sunbathe whilst reading a book in Stephens Green.

    Social media credentials: Apparently I was one of the very first people in Ireland to have a Twitter and Facebook account. Interestingly though, I was the very first person in Ireland to sell a social media engagement marketing campaign, which was for Disney Cars on Bebo. This was way back in 2006 when the Generator team was spearheading the first wave of social advertising in Ireland. It was very challenging back then and we made some hilarious mistakes which we all learned from. My views on the efficacy of social as an advertising platform have since changed having looked at the research that Bob Hoffman cites in his indispensable blog The Ad Contrarian. When the facts change you should change your mind advised John Maynard Keynes and that is the best advice you can give anyone.

    I became hopelessly addicted to both Facebook and Twitter however since weaning myself off both I appreciate the zen like focus I now have for concentrating on work, reading novels and getting things done. Social media stimulates the brain with too much dopamine which makes it increasingly difficult to for our ADD society to focus. I am reading a Daniel Goleman book on this very subject called Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence.
    Nicholas Carr has an interesting book that convincingly argues how the internet, and social media in particular, literally rewires your brain.

    As a part-time comedian I find Twitter to be a brilliant medium to try out pithy jokes. The social validation you get when your tweets get retweeted several hundred times is both delicious and addictive.

    News sources: The Guardian. I have been reading that newspaper all my life and they were the first UK news publisher to really get the net. The Irish Times, our newspaper of record, has its uses too. Then I would rely on The New York Times, The FT, The WSJ, Mashable, AdWeek, Digiday, TechCrunch, ValleyWag, Brand Republic, Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, Psychology Today, Business Insider, The Economist, Digg, Zero Hedge, The Ad Contrarian, Wired, Counterpunch, Harpers, The New Yorker, Slate, Vanity Fair, The New Statesman and Lifehacker.
    Noam Chomsky often says that the business newspapers, The Wall Street Journal and The Financial Times in particular, are the most reliable sources of news content as they don’t filter their news through an ideological prism and just report the brutal, unvarnished truth as businesses can’t function in the real world otherwise.

    Onsite or offsite: Both. I prefer to be out and about meeting clients and passionately banging that digital drum machine.

    Digital strategy/vision: The fact that you are asking that question is a vindication of the innovating work of entrepreneurial companies like Generator, SalesonLine and NetBehaviour back in the day. Having worked in digital for most of my career I would be of the opinion that it is digital or oblivion. This is why The Guardian adopted a “digital first” strategy before everyone else.
    Strategy is about making specific choices to win in the marketplace, so if digital is not integrated into your set of choices, then you can’t expect to win.

    I love Mondays because: I remember a Tony Robbins quote where he said that a week consists of seven days and how sad it is that most people just live for two. This is a brilliant way of looking at it. If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. I feel privileged to work with fantastic people in a dynamic company and such an exciting industry.

    The most compelling reason to love Mondays is this: We know from the research of the famous psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi that we are at our most content when we reach “flow” state, which is an optimal human experience. This is when we get so in the zone that we have a laser like focus on the tasks at hand and our brain stops rattling around with random and emotionally draining thoughts. You can achieve “flow” state at work on a Monday morning but you won’t ever reach “flow” state by passively sitting on a couch watching tv. Unsurprisingly, businesses that can create environments that will induce “flow” states for their employees are businesses that will succeed, thrive and flourish.

    Dubstarts – Great Event : )

    March 26th, 2014

    A great night was had by all at Dubstarts in the Powerscourt Centre yesterday evening. Prosperity had the opportunity to meet many interesting candidates from across the Design, Development, Online Marketing and Sales Sectors. There was a good mix of graduates and experienced jobseekers, and it was a real pleasure to chat to so many interesting people over a few beers.

    For those who might have been at a yoga or mediation retreat, Dubstarts is an event that introduces thirty of Ireland’s most promising tech companies, ranging from early stage start up level to established digital businesses or businesses who are building out there digital side, such as Ryanair, together with jobseekers in the digital space.

     

    OFFSET 2014

    March 4th, 2014

    In just four years OFFSET has earned the status as a leading global creative event.

     

    Over three days (March 21 – 23), this year’s event will be a weekend of presentations, interviews, panel discussions and debates with the very best of Irish and International designers, animators, illustrators, advertisers, artists, photographers on stage.

    These inspiring individuals will speak about their work, ideas and inspirations and give insight into their practices and personal perspectives.

    Independently founded and run, OFFSET has grown from four hundred and fifty to two thousand delegates in its latest edition. This is a truly International affair, with attendees flocking from The UK, Europe, USA, Asia and Australia.

    Speakers at OFFSET 2014 include: Brown Bag Films; Chris Judge, illustrator; UK Advertising Company, Mother London; and American Graphic Designer, Milton Glaser.

    An early bird price for tickets to OFFSET is available until 1st March. To purchase tickets and for all other information on OFFSET 2014 please see http://iloveoffset.com

    The Magenta Magpie

    September 21st, 2011

    Hello Prosperity Blog readers! I’m Roseanne, the newest biddie on the Prosperity block. I started with Prosperity in July and it has taken me this long to get my act together to pull together a blog post! In fact I rocked in here on my first day, demanding login details for the blog. My, they must be disappointed. However it’s not that I haven’t been thinking about it… but more on that anon.

    First allow me to dispense with the formalities and introduce myself properly. I’m a long time blogger myself, blogging on my own blog since 2003: if there were prizes for longevity I would have scooped them all and that’s about the only one I’d be good for. I also have an extremely occasional podcast and until recently many people in the digital sector in Ireland had met me through my previous role as Membership manager with the IIA. Many people on Twitter etc. know me as the crocheter who cooks and bakes, all with varying levels of success. However the constant in my life since I was a teenager has been technology: ever since my eldest brother won a ZX Spectrum in a Telecom Éireann Art Competition (I know, weird prize, right?!) I’ve been hooked.

    MagpieSo I decided that I would write an occasional blog post for the Prosperity blog about all the shiny and interesting links that I happen upon in my virtual travels. With that in mind I have been squirreling away some of my favourite links for your reading pleasure over the last few months. So here goes [deep breath]:

    • Now I know that I said this was going to be about shiny things but I’m going to kick off with a list of ugly things but this was a hot favourite when I shared it on Twitter recently: 10 Ugly SEO Tools that Actually Rock
    • I had a big Skype chat with a group of Springboard students in UCC and during the course of the conversation suggested they read Erin Kissane’s great book “Elements of Content Strategy” It’s not a new publication but it’s a classic (and I would do well to heed my own advice and finish reading my own copy!)
    • Content was a hot topic last week as Refresh Dublin focussed on the topic with CoryAnn Joseph of iQContent and Des Traynor of Intercom.io sharing their own unique perspectives on content. I would HIGHLY recommend getting yourself along to the regular Refresh events. I even managed to nab myself a lovely new t-shirt which I wore with pride at the weekend. (On the topic of content I actually am recruiting two very different content roles at the moment…)
    • While I have been out and about I still have not managed to make the most of the #tweetseats from CrackBird Dublin but I couldn’t help thinking about them when I read about this clever little app from TablesReady. It’s even endorsed by the Cheers Bar in Boston no less. Nothing like a bit of celebrity architecture to make a link seem even shinier, eh?
    • During an actual night out (at the Chambers Ireland Corporate Social Responsibility Awards no less!) I got to talking to my dinner companions about women in technology. The very next day, bless their memories, Michelle Daly and Pauline Sargent shared this very comprehensive list of 100 Women Bloggers you should be reading. And yes that is the sound of my Google Reader exploding!
    • I’m a big Foursquare fan (yes I announced my child’s imminent arrival with a late night checkin to the Coombe…) so I love this little video that gives a really clear view of how busy 4sq is and where.
      A Week of Check-ins on the Path to One Billion from foursquare on Vimeo.
    • I was interested to read on ReadWriteWeb about the acquisition of Ning, the network of social networks I always meant to check out! I think it’s mad to read about the traffic these sites receive: they get “40 million global unique visitors” to their network every month and will add that to the acquiring Glam.com’s 200 million visitors. This is an area that the IIA Social Media Working Group which I remain a member of, will be looking at during a session on International Social Media this evening over in Populis (and much thanks to them for hosting). Follow myself or the chair Eoin Kennedy on Twitter later today to catch a stream or tweets on this session.
    • I love this infographic that I picked up from Rounds who are all about Facebook video chat: it’s about the evolution of long distance relationships. Technology is bringing us all closer – aaaww. Well except for the trolls… And on that note I’ll take flight until the next time the Magenta Magpie spots another shiny link!
    • Evolution of Long distance relationships

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